I am growing several varieties of gooseberries and currants. This year, as every other year, the currant worms are a serious pest. So far, the best solution I have is to spray the plants with soapy water at the first sign of damage. This dries out their skin and kills many of them. A couple repeated applications are usually needed. I am wondering if anyone has had success with any other better ideas. I have tried spreading wood ashes, but that didn't work for me at all. I was thinking of surrounding the plants with anise hyssop plants to keep the adult sawflies confused?
Are there varieties that they don't attack?
Any help is much appreciated
Twisted Tree Farm and Nursery
Ugh, sawflies! I've just had my first encounter with them this season. I didn't really notice until nearly 1/4 of one of my black currants was annihilated. Since then, I've taking the approach of ruthlessly squashing all that I find, and a generous dusting of DE over the plants and on the ground(don't know if it'll harm the blasted larvae, but maybe will harm the adult flies when they emerge, hopefully?) The damage seems to be slowing significantly, at least for now. Of course, the hand-picking solution works for me, as I've got an urban lot with only 5 currant and gooseberry plants...this may not be as realistic if you're in a setting with dozens of bushes. I've noticed its worst on the Black currant- it seems they're less interested in the red one.